Bipartisan Pressure on Apple To Assist FBI

Politicians from both sides of the aisle are putting the pressure on Apple to comply with a court order to help the FBI access potentially crucial information on the iPhone used by San Bernardino Islamic terrorist Syed Farook.

Vice Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) appeared on CNN’s The Lead with Jake Tapper on Wednesday. Asked if Apple should be compelled to assist in unlocking the terrorist’s iPhone, Feinstein said,“I believe very strongly, that this, that Apple should voluntarily agree to it. In the event that doesn’t happen, Senator Burr, the Chairman of our Intelligence Committee, myself as Vice Chairman, we are prepared to put forward a law which would essentially require that. I think that the public safety, the national security of this country makes eloquent testimony as why this should happen.”

Court documents filed Tuesday ordered Apple, Inc. to assist the federal government in unlocking information yet unaccessible in the government-provided iPhone 5C that was in the possession of Farook. The December 2 Islamic terror attacks carried out by Farook and financé-visa bride Tashfeen Malik left 14 dead and 22 injured.

Feinstein joins 2016 GOP presidential candidates like Donald Trump, who on Wednesday told listeners of the Breitbart News Daily radio program on SiriusXM 125 that Apple is “100 percent wrong” for not providing assistance in breaking into the phone.

During Wednesday night’s CNN Republican Presidential Town Hall, candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) asserted that Apple should unlock the phone ,while at the same time he appreciates Apple doesn’t want to create “a backdoor in every cell phone.” He cited the proper use of a search warrant under the Fourth Amendment, and said, “we should unlock their phones and find out who they’re talking to, what texts they’re sending, and that’s a basic matter of keeping this country safe.”

Candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) called the matter a tough issue, according to the New York Post. While he stopped to campaign in Mount Pleasant ahead of the South Carolina primary election, he expressed a desire to see Apple comply with the court order voluntarily.

Presidential candidate and Ohio Governor John Kasich told the Associated Press that he doesn’t see the court order as government overreach, and supports the idea that authorities need the additional communication information according to U.S. News and World Report.

Democratic Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) have been less forthcoming with their positions on Apple’s defiance of the court order.

Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook claimed that complying with the court order would compromise the security of Apple users in the billions according to the San Jose Mercury News. Cook called what the order requires “too dangerous” a creation.

In the course of the investigation into Farook and Malik, authorities have questioned whether the two had accomplices in their the terrorist attack. The phone could provide valuable information.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana


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